Here is what you need to know about wildlife in Gaspésie to help you check off items on your list of “Gaspésie Tour Extras” during the Tour de la Gaspésie Discovery Activity.
Encounter a seal
Keep your eyes peeled, because, from Sainte-Flavie onward, you can spot seals basking in the sun on the rocks all along the coast as well as in Gaspé Bay and the Gulf of St. Lawrence. To become more familiar with seals, visit Forillon National Park, participate in a sea cruise or go sea kayaking. If you are feeling even more adventurous, you can go snorkelling or scuba diving with the Club Nautique de Percé (a yacht club) and, with any luck, swim and play with seals in the water!
See a whale emerge from the sea
Seven species of whales are found in the waters off the Gaspé Peninsula, including the world’s largest whale, the blue whale, and even dolphins! From Sainte-Anne-des-Monts, you can sometimes see a whale’s blow in the distance. Get out your binoculars and stop at the Cap-de-la-Madeleine Lighthouse or visit the area around Forillon National Park to observe these fascinating animals from the shore. To increase your likelihood of seeing whales, participate in a whale-watching cruise in the Forillon and Percé areas where they feed.
Whale Cruise. Photo: Mathieu DupuisObserve a moose, caribou or deer
Moose, caribou and deer are found in great numbers in Gaspésie and can be easily observed during a hike. Moose are particularly likely to be seen on Mount Ernest-Laforce in parc national de la Gaspésie (a very accessible hike for the whole family), while caribou are found on the summits of Mount Albert and Mount Jacques-Cartier. You can also participate in a photo safari with Extrême Chic-Chocs-Safari in the backcountry of Sainte-Anne-des-Monts. Deer are more likely to be found in the Chaleur Bay area. Keep your eyes peeled along the road, especially in the vicinity of the Station touristique Pin Rouge where deer have been known to visit cottage occupants!
Moose. Photo: CHOK Images
Watch northern gannets in flight
Parc national de l’Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé is home to 116,000 northern gannets! You can get very close to these birds to admire them, which makes this the most accessible colony in the world. Join a boat tour departing from the Percé wharf that will take you around Percé Rock and Bonaventure Island, where you can admire the northern gannets nesting in the cliffs. Once on the island, you can hike to the colony on one of several trails and learn more about the unique history and heritage of this site. Northern gannets are known for their spectacular dives. Whether you are on the wharf, the seaside boardwalk or one of Percé’s terraces, all you have to do is look at the sea to spot them!
Would you like to learn more about wildlife in Gaspésie? Be sure to visit Exploramer and the Bioparc de la Gaspésie.
Northern gannets. Photo: Steve Deschênes
Enjoy the discovery activity!
The Tour de la Gaspésie Discovery Activity is fun for the whole family! How does it work?
As soon as you arrive in Gaspésie, head to a tourist information office to pick up your Tour de la Gaspésie Discovery Activity booklet. The booklet includes suggestions for your Gaspésie Tour, a Seek and Find game and information about the collectible mystery stickers. Collect all five mystery stickers in the tourist information offices of Gaspésie to complete your Seek and Find game for even more family fun!
Other Gaspésie Tour Extras: